I want a car where we’re not on a first-name basis with the service people.
Thus said Laura as we drove to pick up her Audi, which had been in the shop for the past week. Both of our cars are plagued with problems. Both are Volkswagen products. We have owned Subaru’s in the past, and haven’t had anywhere near as many problems with them. Subaru’s motto, “Inexpensive, and build to stay that way” seems to hold true. As we considered mounting repair costs to our current vehicles, that motto sounded very appealing.
So we get to the Audi shop, and the bill is significantly more than we thought it should be – $250 more, in fact. We had a long discussion with the service manager, and were able to get the extra charges removed because they deal with an ongoing problem that we tried and tried to get fixed while the car was under warranty. The trunk leaks every time it rains, and we have brought this car in time and time again, but they can’t seem to fix it. When enough water accumulates, we start to have electrical problems. First the XM radio goes out. Even worse, the electric trunk latch will short out. When that happens, not only can we not keep the trunk shut, but we can’t put the roof back on the car. They couldn’t fix this while the car was under warranty, and now it seems Audi is wanting to start charging us for the problem. I don’t think so.
It turns out that the both our service representative and the service manager are fairly new on the job, and are not as familiar with these ongoing problems. It turns out that our previous service rep, Daniel, has moved to (of all places) the Subaru dealership! So maybe we can’t escape a long-term relationship with automotive service.